Montréal is currently aiming to become an international hub for artificial intelligence (AI). Home to C2, the innovative business conference centering on commerce and creativity, the city hosted an AI Forum this past May, where leaders in the industry spoke about new cutting-edge technologies. The event was curated by the co-founders of Element AI, an artificial intelligence solutions provider, Jean-François Gagné and Yoshua Bengio. Bengio is also a strategy advisor for Botler AI.
“Artificial Intelligence can only be as smart as the network dedicated to its creation and growth,” Gagné told Tech Vibes. Element AI and C2 partnered for the event in order to bring “the best and brightest people in the educational, creative, and commercial space for a discussion around artificial intelligence and its impact on the world.”
And Montreal’s intellectual capital expands well beyond AI. The historic city is home to 11 higher learning institutions, including four major universities. It’s also the research capital of Canada, with more than 200 research centers and over 1,500 institutions active in research and development. Last year, Montréal was named Intelligent Community of the Year by the Intelligent Community Forum. In November 2017, the first-ever Forum on the Socially Responsible Development of Artificial Intelligence. will take place in Montréal to discuss the social impacts of this new technological revolution.
The tech hub also boasts strong economic sectors including life sciences, aerospace, and transportation. This gives meeting and event planners access to renowned speakers, scientific research, and endless site visit options. More and more international events are finding a home in Montréal, including the inaugural International Congress on Personalized Medicine.
“We are at the dawn of a new era of medicine that will redefine healthcare management,” said Dr. Pavel Hamet, the congress’ founder and the former president of Palais des congrès’s Ambassadors’ Club. “Recent breakthroughs and advancements in molecular biology, genomics, and data management enable the development of a more specific medical approach focusing on individual genetic makeup in its relationship with the environment.”
There’s also the Aerospace Major Events Committee of the Palais des congrès de Montréal, co-founded by Hany Moustapha, a leader of the aerospace industry and president of the Ambassadors’ Club, that’s meant to draw more international events within the aerospace industry to Montréal. The city is among the world’s top three aerospace centers and one of the few places in the world where conference organizers can access every aircraft component within a 20-mile radius. Greater Montréal handles 70 percent of the aerospace research and development conducted in Canada. Some international events that the program has brought to the city include, ASME Turbo Expo in 2015, the Innovation Aerospace Forum and CRIAQ Research Forum in 2016, and Aeromart Montréal in 2017.
The Palais des congrès, offering more than 550,000 square feet of event space, also recently designated a fund to aid Aerospace Committee members, and members of the local aerospace community, in nurturing strong business ties with international convention decision-makers.
Meeting organizers will also enjoy the connectivity of Montréal. With more than 130 direct flights into the city and the Canadian dollar having a favorable exchange rate for U.S. bills, attendees will have a smooth commute to the international hotspot. Hosting an event is also made easy by registering with the Canada Border Services Agency, meeting materials can clear customs at the Palais.
The Palais des congrès has hosted international events for more than three decades. It’s strategically located in the heart of downtown, which boasts 15,000 hotel rooms, including 4,000 that are directly connected to the convention center. PCMA named the Palais the Best High-Tech Venue, noting the property’s more than 90 HD screens, as well as a video wall, making it a breeze to incorporate digital signage, branding, and live social-media feeds.